Land and Construction

Housebuilding specialist

Deputy news editor, Inside Housing

Pete Apps

Deputy news editor


Phone: 020 7772 8360

Fax: 020 7772 8591


District councils 'to lose £75m' with New Homes Bonus reforms

13/01/2017 | By Nick Johnstone

The planned introduction of a housing growth baseline for the New Homes Bonus has been slammed by district councils that believe they could lose £75m.


Starter Homes changes expected as White Paper draws closer

13/01/2017 | By News team

Sector figures are expecting key changes to the Starter Homes policy as the publication of the long-awaited Housing White Paper draws closer.  

Rob Murfin

The importance of section 106 monitoring

12/01/2017 | By Rob Murfin

A better understanding of planning obligation data could help councils persuade communities to accept new housing, says Rob Murfin

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Fifty-eight per cent of councillors expect to build on green belt

11/01/2017 | By Nick Johnstone

Fifty-eight per cent of councillors have said they expect to allocate green belt land for new housing over the next five years, according to a survey.


5.5% growth in 'public housing' development

11/01/2017 | By Nick Johnstone

Construction of new housing developments increased by 1.2% in November compared with the previous month, underpinned by a 5.5% growth in housing association development, according to new figures released by the Office for National Statistics.


Scottish Government calls for simplified planning system

11/01/2017 | By Sophie Barnes

The Scottish Government wants to simplify the planning system to encourage greater input from citizens.

Sadiq Khan Call-in

Sadiq Khan calls in two housing schemes

10/01/2017 | By Nick Johnstone

The mayor of London Sadiq Khan has taken control of two planning applications containing a total of around 700 homes – in his first planning ‘call-in’ since being elected.


Further council has no Section 106 monitoring

09/01/2017 | By Luke Barratt

A London council has admitted it has no process in place for ensuring developers provide the social housing that they promise to build.


Successful planning applications at 10-year high

03/01/2017 | By Luke Barratt

Successful planning permissions have reached their highest level for a 12-month period in 10 years, according to the Home Builders Federation and Glenigan, a construction data provider.


Residential planning applications rise 6% in a year

16/12/2016 | By Clare Mullooly

The number of granted residential planning applications has increased by 6% compared to last year, according to the latest figures.

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Communities with Neighbourhood Plans can block development, says Barwell

14/12/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Communities with a Neighbourhood Plan will be able to block housing developments even if their local council does not have an up-to-date five-year housing land supply, the housing minister has announced.


Tory MPs table planning bill amendments

09/12/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

A group of Conservative MPs have tabled amendments to the Neighbourhood Planning Bill which would protect the green belt and strengthen powers of local people to reject development.

James Murray

London Plan to be published in 2019

07/12/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The London Plan will not be published until 2019, the deputy mayor of housing for the Greater London Authority has revealed.


Scottish Government proposes planning fees hike

06/12/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The Scottish Government has proposed increasing planning fees more than fourfold for some major applications, as part of a consultation published today.


Builders hit back at Javid landbank threat

05/12/2016 | By Mark Smulian

House builders have hit back at a threat by communities secretary Sajid Javid to tackle alleged landbanking.


Local MP pledges to fight Birmingham plan decision

29/11/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

A Conservative MP has vowed to fight the government’s decision to give the go-ahead to Birmingham’s development plans “by all legal means”.

house building

Associations have capacity to double new homes – Savills

28/11/2016 | By Simon Brandon

Housing associations have the financial capacity to more than double the number of new homes they build each year within the next decade, according to a new report from property advisor Savills.


Javid takes lead on cross-departmental housing taskforce

25/11/2016 | By Corin Williams

Communities secretary Sajid Javid has revealed he is heading up a Whitehall housing taskforce, as he issued a stark warning to big builders that they must improve build-out rates.

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Sajid Javid: building the homes we need


Sajid Javid warns house builders build-out rates must increase, in a hard-hitting speech to the National House Building Council annual lunch


Barwell lifts block on Birmingham's 15-year housing strategy

25/11/2016 | By Nick Johnstone

Housing minister Gavin Barwell has lifted a controversial block on Birmingham’s 15-year strategy for the building of tens of thousands of new homes.

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L&Q and Fairview in 800-home site acquisition

23/11/2016 | By Nick Johnstone

L&Q and Fairview Homes have teamed up to buy a 5.5-acre plot of land in Park Royal, north-west London in their first 50/50 joint venture together.

For use in Inside Housing, 13 November 2015

Leeds 'requires major housing boost' to avoid shortfall

22/11/2016 | By Pete Apps

The Leeds City Region needs a major boost in its housing supply if it is to continue its economic growth, with a 30,000 home shortfall anticipated by 2021.


Radical overhaul of CIL considered

18/11/2016 | By Nick Johnstone , Sophie Barnes

The government is considering launching a radical overhaul of the Community Infrastructure Levy developer charge in next week’s Autumn Statement – aimed at “massively” simplifying the process and making it less open to negotiation.


Javid blocks 225-home scheme

11/11/2016 | By Carl Brown

Sajid Javid has intervened to block a controversial 225-home scheme on environmental grounds.


RTPI: green belt should be considered for housing

10/11/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The green belt should be considered for new housing, the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) has said.

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Former Ministry of Defence properties at Howe Barracks in Canterbury.

MoD identifies further 56 sites for sale

08/11/2016 | By Pete Apps

The Ministry of Defence has identified a further 56 sites to sell, as it moves towards its target of releasing enough land for the development of 55,000 homes by 2020.

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Looking for land

04/11/2016 | By Carl Brown

The West Midlands Combined Authority has set up a Land Commission to help bring forward sites for housing. With its growth ambitions already outstripping councils’ plans for new homes, Carl Brown examines the advice housing professionals are offering to the commission

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Burnham concerned over Greater Manchester green belt plans

31/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Greater Manchester mayoral hopeful Andy Burnham has hit out at the region’s plan to build on green belt land.

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County councils push back against Local Plans role

31/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

County councils have hit back at the government’s suggestion they could make Local Plans on behalf of district councils.

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A new order?

28/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Birmingham City Council is planning to use compulsory purchase orders to seize undeveloped land from developers. Sophie Barnes looks at whether others could follow.


Barwell: county councils could help create Local Plans

19/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

County councils could be drafted in to help create a Local Plan where a local district council has failed to do so, under government amendments to the Neighbourhood Planning Bill.

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Developers question changes to planning condition rules

18/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Developers are not convinced measures to restrict pre-commencement planning conditions will speed up development, a committee of MPs heard today.


Birmingham presses ahead with radical CPO policy

18/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Birmingham City Council will push ahead with its controversial policy of seizing undeveloped land from developers, despite a call-in by opposition councillors.


Housing association wins appeal against demolition of homes

17/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

A housing association in the South East will no longer have to demolish 35 newly-built homes after winning a planning appeal.


Green belt v housing need: the battles raising big questions about the government's approach to planning Video

13/10/2016 | By Martin Hilditch

The Local Plans of two major West Midlands councils currently hang in the balance. The result could impact on plan-making for new homes across England. Martin Hilditch investigates


Healey accuses Barwell of granting 'political mate's favour'

12/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The shadow housing secretary has accused Gavin Barwell of pausing Bradford Council’s Local Plan as a “political ‘mate’s favour’”.

Bradford Council headquarters

Barwell blocks council's Local Plan over green belt development

12/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Gavin Barwell has forced Bradford Council to pause its Local Plan because the council wants to build 11,000 homes on green belt land.

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Labour MPs criticise planning condition limit plan

11/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The government’s plan to limit the use of planning conditions developers must satisfy before starting construction on a site will not speed up housing development, Labour MPs said last night.


Barwell criticises housing assessments for Local Plans

10/10/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The housing minister has questioned the accuracy of housing needs assessments used by councils when creating Local Plans, as his department looks to improve local authorities’ target-setting for new homes.

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city hall

London affordable 'tariff' guidance published before year-end

06/10/2016 | By Pete Apps

New planning rules setting a ‘tariff’ for affordable housing in London will be published before the end of the year, City Hall sources have confirmed.


How we can learn to love planners again

04/10/2016 | By Toby Lloyd

The Neighbourhood Planning Bill may shift the balance in favour of development and ensure affordable homes are built, says Toby Lloyd


Rural dreams

03/10/2016 | By Matthew O'Connell

Landowners can unlock the affordable housing shortage in rural communities, says Matthew O’Connell

Regeneration in Gateshead, Newcastle

Developers warn against councils using CPOs for undeveloped land

27/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The Home Builders Federation fears councils could seek to use compulsory purchase orders (CPOs) to hinder development, following Birmingham’s groundbreaking move to seize undeveloped land from developers.

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Javid gives green light for 440-home scheme

23/09/2016 | By Carl Brown

Sajid Javid has given the green light to a controversial 440-home development in Bradford.

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Southwark Council to challenge CPO decision

21/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Southwark Council will seek a judicial review to challenge the government’s decision to stop the council from forcing leaseholders to move out of the Aylesbury Estate.


Council approves CPO plan for undeveloped land

20/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Birmingham City Council plans to use compulsory purchase orders (CPOs) to seize undeveloped land from developers in an innovative bid to free up sites for new housing.

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Official housebuilding stats '30,000 short'

19/09/2016 | By Pete Apps

The government’s official housebuilding statistics exclude a fifth of all new build completions, according to a report by the Home Builders Federation (HBF).


Most planning applications approved since recession

15/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

Councils received and approved the highest number of planning applications since the recession in 2008, when applications dropped off sharply, according to the latest figures.

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The Wrong Pedal

14/09/2016 | By Colin Wiles

Neighbourhood Plans are hindering not helping the delivery of new homes, says Colin Wiles

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Planning for tomorrow

13/09/2016 | By Richard Bacon

The planning system needs to better balance the needs of councils, house builders and local residents, says Richard Bacon

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1,000 hectares removed from green belt

09/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

More than 1,000 hectares of land were removed from the green belt last year - the second-highest figure in the past six years.

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planning applications plans

London authorities set for greater CPO powers

08/09/2016 | By Sophie Barnes

The Greater London Authority (GLA) and Transport for London (TfL) could be given the power to create joint compulsory purchase orders to increase housing development on public sector land, according to proposed legislation.

Land Registry

Land Registry privatisation plan on hold

07/09/2016 | By Heather Spurr

Ministers have put plans to privatise the Land Registry on hold as the government publishes a new bill to boost neighbourhood planning.


Khan approves 10,000-home masterplan

06/09/2016 | By Carl Brown

Sadiq Khan has approved a 10,000-home masterplan for a regeneration scheme in east London.

Empty land

'Councils must release land' NI finance minister says

05/09/2016 | By Heather Spurr

Northern Ireland’s finance minister has called on councils to “step up” and release more land for development.


Ministers press ahead with neighbourhood planning changes

05/09/2016 | By Carl Brown

The government is pressing ahead with several reforms aimed at speeding up and simplifying the neighbourhood planning process.


Race to the top

31/08/2016 | By Mark Winterburn

Making developers prove the social value of bids could increase the supply of affordable homes, says Mark Winterburn


Javid scuppers rural development plans

26/08/2016 | By Heather Spurr

Sajid Javid has rejected two applications in rural Essex to build a total of 1,500 new homes, following appeals by the developers.



25/08/2016 | By Susan Emmett

The market is cautious but we still require 300,000 new homes a year, says Susan Emmett

city hall

G15 chair on board of Khan's new housing body

23/08/2016 | By Pete Apps

The chair of the G15 and four council leaders will sit on the governance board of a new body set up by Sadiq Khan to oversee housebuilding in the capital.

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